Fri 29th Aug 2014 | Last updated: Fri 29th Aug 2014 at 13:34pm

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Fr Alexander Lucie-Smith

Fr Alexander Lucie-Smith

Alexander Lucie-Smith is a Catholic priest, doctor of moral theology and consulting editor of The Catholic Herald. On Twitter he is @ALucieSmith

What the alcoholic St Monica teaches us about redemption

Monica and Augustine, as portrayed in the film 'Restless Heart' (CNS)

Like her son St Augustine, she overcame many difficulties to achieve sanctity

Why are so many priests alcoholics?

The downfall of many clerics  (PA)

Denying that there is a problem in the clergy has not helped us in the past

Fr Charles-Roux: He loved the Mass, he loved God. May he now enjoy the vision of God forever

Fr Charles-Roux

Now Fr Charles-Roux is in the presence of the reality that lies within the sacramental sign

How Franciscan is Pope Francis?

St Francis in Ecstasy by Caravaggio

What perhaps we are not seeing from this Pope is the mystical and ecstatic characteristics of St Francis

Giving credit where it’s due to Pope Paul VI

Pope Paul VI offers a blessing to the faithful in Rome before flying to Istanbul in 1967 (Photo: CNS)

Despite severe challenges, the Church did not enter a steep decline the end of the pontiff’s reign

We must guard and defend the Church’s precious liturgical heritage at all costs

The Congregation for Divine Worship has suggested several ways the rite could be performed with greater dignity (CNS)

The liturgy does not belong to us but the Church

Hamas is using Gaza’s civilians as pawns in the war against Israel

A mother and son survey the damage to their home in Gaza after an airstrike (Photo: CNS)

Hamas clearly fails the St Alphonsus test. Civilian deaths are not just collateral damage – they are its chief weapon

Bravo, France! And shame on you, David Cameron!

A Iraqi protester carries a cross during a protest against the Islamic State (CNS)

France has offered asylum to the Iraqi Christians forced to flee from Mosul

Why Catholicism’s credibility survived the Great War

The rather gloomy outlook of the Church meant that it was better equipped than most faiths to cope with the horrors of the First World War

If only David Cameron would follow the example of the Italian prime minister

Mariam Ibrahim of Sudan carries one of her children as she arrives with Lapo Pistelli, Italy's vice minister for foreign affairs, holding her other child. Also picture is Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi, right, his wife Agnese, left (CNS)

Clearly the Italians have been at work behind the scenes to save Meriam Ibrahim